“Hold still!” Mother chided, yanking impatiently at my corset lacing.
“Someday women won’t have to suffer these torturous contraptions!” I lamented.
“That’s absurd! Respectable gentlemen don’t wed thick-waisted ladies,” she retorted. “What’s next, women wearing trousers? Keep these fanciful notions to yourself, otherwise you’ll bring our good name into disrepute!”
Fee Johnstone is a managing editor of a medical journal who favors cats, cheese, and craft beer over most other things.
She looks at me with disgust, her thin eyebrows scrunched.
“What? You think you’re so special? You fat, dumb, talentless girl. You are nothing.”
I walk over to her. She walks to me. I look straight into her pale gray eyes.
“You suck,” I tell the girl in the mirror.
Jewel Gray is a stay-at-home-mom who tries to write a little.
I stare at the photo of my hand gripping the barre, cropped neatly at the wrist. I imagine the attached body isn’t skinny enough. Perhaps I have a sweaty grimace, a too-low leg, or an unpointed foot. I understand; I’m not good publicity.
Except my hand. My hand is acceptable.
Emily belongs to the least liked demographic, and wants to be a scientist when she grows up.